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 / Updated  / Source: Reuters

Isn't it ironic? Online shopping is helping the U.S. Postal Service overcome some losses caused by online communication.

The struggling Postal Service reported its losses narrowed in its first quarter that ended December as a surge in online shopping and package delivery boosted its revenues.

The agency, which has lost money for 19 of the last 21 quarters, lost $354 million in October to December of 2013, compared to the same quarter the previous year when it posted a net loss of $1.3 billion.

Revenues from shipping and package delivery rose by 14.1 percent or $479 million, driven by a growth in online shopping and a lucrative deal with online retail giant Amazon to deliver packages on Sundays in some U.S. cities, the agency said on Friday.

The Postal Service has been grappling with tumbling mail volumes as Americans communicate more online, and struggles under the weight of massive required payments for future retiree health benefits. A 2006 law requires the Postal Service to fund 75 years worth of its future retirees' healthcare by 2016.

-- Reuters